If an easily accessible / crazy good fishing spot is what you’re looking for, then this episode is for you!
This Fish’n Canada adventure is all about easy access to some of the biggest, baddest, hard fighting fish in the nation. For this episode, Pete’s on the bank of the Otonabee River right inside the beautiful quaint city of Peterborough, Ontario. It’s the largest city on the TRENT-SEVERN WATERWAY and the regional center for the KAWARTHA LAKES cottage country. It also boasts the world’s highest hydraulic lift lock. He’s joined by Will Muschett, owner of Peterborough Carping Guides and an all-round Carp fishing nut!
They set up for this shoot pretty much in downtown Peterborough, on the banks of the Otonabee River. And although this river is known for bass, walleye and Muskie, they were going to bypass those more traditional species.
In this video Pete makes his first attempt at using Garmin’s new Quickdraw feature. The location he’s fishing had zero chart information. After 5-10 minutes of idling around with Quickdraw turned on, his entire fishing area was charted in 1 foot increments. Knowing this helped in locating the best spots for putting feed out and casting his bait to.
FEEDING TIME: Probably the single most important step you can take to be successful in carp fishing, is baiting, which is another word for chumming. Ideally, you toss bait around the area you plan to fish days before you actually grab your rod, and then top it up the morning of. If you do it right, you will have carp waiting for you when you show up ready to cast. Not only does this draw in fish and hold them in an area, it can also get them accustomed to the baits you plan to fish, which in the boys’ case was corn.
Pete took the Princecraft out from shore, but still within casting distance from their intended home base, and when Will gave the word as to when Pete could bomb a bunch of ground bait (small pieces), he did so in 2 different areas.
Carp Are Here To Stay
OTONABEE CARP HISTORY: Carp have been in these waters for over a hundred years, so there’s a lot of them and they’re here to stay. And fishing them is a blast! The carp in this area average between 12 and 17 pounds, and being river fish, they tend to be a little stronger than their lake-bound cousins.
WHAT CARP EAT: Adult carp are omnivorous, consuming varying amounts of plant roots, algae, crustaceans and insect life. They generally feed on the bottom by sucking up quantities of silt, then spitting it back out after selecting the food items. Studies have shown carp can discriminate between salty, bitter and sweet substances. In-the-know anglers fool their quarry by creating bait concoctions that focus on carp’s well-developed senses of smell and taste. As carp approach a possible meal, their highly developed taste buds in the skin of the snout, mouth, lips and throat make the call whether to inhale the bait or refuse it.
Every good Carp angler has their own recipe for baiting their “swims” as they are referred to. Usually it’s a simple concoction of cracked corn, sweet corn, millet and so forth. Will made this batch himself & being the industrious and enthusiastic guide that he is; he purposefully didn’t reveal all of the ingredients he used… well played Mr. Muschett!
The stigma of carp fishing being a lackluster affair is being replaced quickly by refined gadgetry and a keen awareness of the sporting qualities of these big fish, which not too long ago many considered invasive pests in North America. But, a revolution is taking place, as more and more anglers discover how challenging big Carp can be.
OTMP go fish ONTARIO
Did you know?
GETTIN’ THERE with RAM TRUCKS
To get to today’s non-stop Carp fishing, I first took Hwy 401 to County Rd 28 at the town of Port Hope. I traveled north to County Rd 2 at Bailieboro and turned east. I next turned south on Serpent Mounds Rd and then east on Shanty Shore Rd. I finally turned south on Bolin Rd to my accommodations at Anglers’ Retreat on Rice Lake. From there, it was easy access to either the mouth of the Otonabee River via the boat, or a quick drive to the upper river in Peterborough via the Ram.